Case Digest: Luz Farms v. Secretary of Agrarian Reform G.R. No. 86889,Dec 04, 1990,192 SCRA 51 (1990)
On 10 June 1988, RA 6657 was approved by the President of the Philippines, which includes, among others, the raising of livestock, poultry and swine in its coverage. Petitioner Luz Farms, a corporation engaged in the livestock and poultry business, avers that it would be adversely affected by the enforcement of sections 3(b), 11, 13, 16 (d), 17 and 32 of the said law. Hence, it prayed that the said law be declared unconstitutional. The mentioned sections of the law provies, among others, the product-sharing plan, including those engaged in livestock and poultry business.
Luz Farms further argued that livestock or poultry raising is not similar with crop or tree farming. That the land is not the primary resource in this undertaking and represents no more than 5% of the total investments of commercial livestock and poultry raisers. That the land is incidental but not the principal factor or consideration in their industry. Hence, it argued that it should not be included in the coverage of RA 6657 which covers “agricultural lands.
Whether or not Sections 3(b), 11, 13 and 32 of R.A. No. 6657 (the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Law of 1988), insofar as the said law includes the raising of livestock, poultry and swine in its coverage as well as the Implementing Rules and Guidelines promulgated in accordance therewith are constitutional.
NO. The transcripts of the deliberations of the Constitutional Commission of 1986 on the meaning of the word "agricultural," clearly show that it was never the intention of the framers of the Constitution to include livestock and poultry industry in the coverage of the constitutionally-mandated agrarian reform program of the Government. The Committee adopted the definition of "agricultural land" as defined under Section 166 of R.A. 3844, as land devoted to any growth, including but not limited to crop lands, salt beds, fishponds, idle and abandoned land (Record, CONCOM, August 7, 1986, Vol. III, p. 11).The intention of the Committee is to limit the application of the word "agriculture." Commissioner Jamir proposed to insert the word "ARABLE" to distinguish this kind of agricultural land from such lands as commercial and industrial lands and residential properties because all of them fall under the general classification of the word "agricultural". This proposal, however, was not considered because the Committee contemplated that agricultural lands are limited to arable and suitable agricultural lands and therefore, do not include commercial, industrial and residential lands.
It is evident from the foregoing discussion that Section II of R.A. 6657 which includes "private agricultural lands devoted to commercial livestock, poultry and swine raising" in the definition of "commercial farms" is invalid, to the extent that the aforecited agro-industrial activities are made to be covered by the agrarian reform program of the State. There is simply no reason to include livestock and poultry lands in the coverage of agrarian reform.